School exposes children excessively to screens

Collective attention gathers associations that struggle against overexposure to screens. He sent his recommendations to Representative Caroline Janvier LREM At the origin of the bill is protective against excessive exposure of children to screens, and will send them to candidates for the presidential election. Assises de l’Attention takes place on March 19 in Paris (registration here).


The discovery of children’s overexposure to screens seems to be finally emerging in the public debate ! Already monopolized several hours the day before [1]more than 50 % of children increased their screen time during lockdowns. The bill is requested by Representative Caroline Janvier (LREM) to stop this pest and column published on the topic in the world last december, Children’s excessive exposure to screens may be the evil of the century » Witness the onset of awareness that we welcome. But the proposals must be up to the challenges: we are not dealing with them evil of the century » with bandages.

Health and early childhood professionals, educators and parents, are seeing the devastation wrought on young people by the digital boom. Disturbances of language, attention, learning, socialization, wave effect, consequences of cyber harassment, frivolous access to inappropriate content: what we see emerge in this highly interconnected community of all characteristics of a major public health problem – plus – environmental impact documentation. To treat it, it is necessary to attack not only the symptoms but the causes of evil. and questioning the economic interests that underlie them and the political and ideological choices that encourage them.

Parents can’t do everything

Current thinking focuses on to forbid » : warnings on products and in health brochures, rules of use restricted in certain places, awareness, and even exercise », folks. It is up to them to understand the risks and limit the damage. In the face of the explosion of pornography and violence, a law is proposed on February 24, 2022 Encourage the use of parental controls ». So parents will only need to activate the control feature to protect their kids from inappropriate content. But it is not misleading to promote good practices »Without questioning the fact that these machines end up in the hands of children from an early age ? Without mentioning the obligation to provide a Qatari Ryal The vaccination code from the age of 12, which implicitly encourages owning a smartphone. So it is his responsibility ? Do parents have to each to forbid » They must rest, while they are subject to an increased injunction to use digital technology, including from school ? So is it just up to parents to protect young people from screen addiction? ?

It is time to denounce political choices in the field of education. Since 2015, the National Education Digital School Project has demonstrated the goal That young people are on the same level in the digital world ». Then it was allocated one billion euros, and we remember the contract that Minister Vallaud Belkacem signed with Microsoft. Since 2019, regions have moved to High School 4.0, spending huge sums to provide high school students with laptops (42 million euros in Grand Est), and textbooks are disappearing, making way for these free digital tools. In 2021, as part of the recovery plan, the state invested 115 million euros To support educational digital transformation projects in all primary schools ».

Huge investments are being made to digitize schools. Is it a priority or even necessary ? Unsplash / Kelly Sekima

The political choice made in high places is clear: to immerse our children in digital technology from an early age, under the pretext of introducing them to the new and necessary. more effective ». But, as we have long advocated, education by Digital is not educational to Digital. In fact, digital school does not improve learning, quite the contrary. Classes remain overburdened by a lack of investment in people, and children are finding themselves more and more immersed in screens that have become ubiquitous at school time, as well as already overused elsewhere. While the school remained one of the few places that could be preserved.

What we see is that the evolution educational digital » It contributes to making them more consumers of new technologies than informed users. The number of parents of students 4.0 » Attest to the fact that the use of these tools is much more entertainment » Non-educational, and they find themselves unable to control their children’s use of it. In fact, the School digital transformation » It accelerates and enhances screen dependence, without in any way improving student success – the 2015 Pisa study already testified to this. Ed-Tech lobbies made enterprise experts »which we denounced in an open letter to regulators of public real estate for digital education ; Teachers, parents, and high school students were not invited to comment on these new practices. Because they are obligated to teach and protect their children to live with digital technology, parents find themselves feeling guilty and vulnerable. It is forbidden to repeat this Progress » in the question.

This is amazing School Update » It ignores the interests of children and their physical, mental, intellectual and psychological health. The plan appears to be to make the school a market, as explained in a 1998 article by Diplomatic world. A school whose goal is no longer to liberate young people, but to sell them to the digital industry Available brain time » [2].


This forum was written by Collectif Attention (the undersigned), and signed by:

• Nicholas Berard, journalist and author of 5G mon amour

• Cedric Biagini, Editor and Co-Director of Critiques de l’école numérique

• Philip Beehewics, engineer and author with Karen Movilley of Digital School Disaster: The Call for a School Without Screens

• Frédéric Bordage, founder of the GreenIT Collective

• Francois Garge, historian and lecturer at the University of Burgundy

• Fabian Lebrun, sociologist and professor at the University of Nantes

• Yannick Ministor, Availability Judge

For interest group:

• Audrey Martian (We Are Nobody)

• Jean-Luc Quilling (We Are Nobody)

• Catherine Lucio (TheNobody)

• Yves Marie (searches)

• Florent Souillot (searches)

• Marie-Claude Bossier (CoSE)

• Ann-Lise Ducanda (Screenpeace and CoSE)

• Janine Boson Budd (Childhood Channel: Danger ?)

• Sabine Duflo (CoSE)

• Stephen Kerkhoff (on behalf of the environment)

• Hervey Limore (Technologos)

• Sophie Pelletier (Priaritime)

• Samuel Sauvage (hop)

• Mylene Pereira (Screenpeace)

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